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Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

I finally got around to watching the fairly recent movie version.   But I'm not honestly sure that I was able to assess it on its merits.   I loved all the little book-details  - Smiley's house seemed about right - though I didn't spot the Dresden shepherdess - and the Circus, and the late Sixties/early Seventies phonebox, and Mendel's bees and everything made of strange old plastics.  It maybe wasn't all shabby enough. I'm sure the Seventies was shabbier, and the Tinker Tailor Seventies certainly was.   But it worked as a more-stylish better-maintained Seventies.

But there is So. Much. Plot that gets whizzed through in the last montage sequence!  Can't help wondering how many people watching the story for the first time worked out what was going on with Tarr in Paris, and why Haydon was killed, and I wish they could have given a little more time to the faithless beautiful Ann.

Ricky Tarr was great, and unexpectedly, so was Connie Sachs - in fact, I wish they'd let her do a bit more with the part.   Benedict Cumberbatch a little disappointing as Guillam, I thought - too young, and he made Guillam's nerves too obvious: Guillam is supposed to be good at his job!  I think a more subtle actor could have done that better.   Colin Firth made a great Haydon though. Very appropriately magnetic but also dodgy.

Still. Le Carré!  Hurray! 



( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
17th Oct, 2013 00:55 (UTC)
I was somewhat disappointed in the film (especially in the decision to make Guillam gay, which felt like rather gratuitous angst in a story that really didn't need it), but the scene where Smiley completely destroys Esterhazy on the airport tarmac was worth the entire price of admission.
17th Oct, 2013 15:01 (UTC)
Guillam and Smiley were the two characters who seemed to me most changed. I can't see book-Smiley going for a swim like that, all naked and exposed in public! And as with the TV series, inevitably much of Smiley's own inner torment was lost, so he looked more implacable - which I don't think he should quite be, at this stage, not until Smiley's People, and the last illusion of the illusionless man...

Since they had already made Guillam young and nervy,I thought it worked OK that they made him gay as well. I guess it was too complicated to show him that reverence for the War generation that is such an important aspect of him in the books, so I quite liked that they gave him a story of his own there.
17th Oct, 2013 23:54 (UTC)
It was my intro to the story (still haven't read the book or watched the miniseries) and I followed the plot okay! I think. I enjoyed it, anyway.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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